What a time to be alive. The Oilers played a game last night but it was overshadowed significantly by the news out of the NBA. The Utah Jazz’s Rudy Gobert — a giant, selfish, arrogant, stupid fucking idiot — played cavalier with COVID-19 earlier this week and made a point of groping every recording device on the podium to prove some kind of point. Two days later he was listed out with illness before eventually testing positive for the coronavirus. Immediately, the NBA made the decision to put their season on hiatus. All this happened during the first period of yesterday’s game.
This morning, the NHL has already canceled every team’s morning skate and their typical media availabilities. As of this writing there is a league conference call scheduled for 1PM EST (11AM MST), where it has been suggested that the NHL will indeed suspend their season too.
As suspected, it appears the NHL will hold off on putting their league on hold until the absolute last minute — evidenced by Columbus’ initial response to the Ohio governor’s recommendation about mass gatherings — but it does seem like they have no choice but to follow the NBA’s lead. There are a handful of NHL teams that share buildings with NBA teams and the risks seem to greatly outweigh the rewards here.
And sure, as many have noted, it would be so typically Edmonton Oilers that, in only their second good year during Connor McDavid’s career, they make the playoffs in a year where the season is canceled. Of course, that doesn’t really matter. Sports will go on and the most important thing is we do our part as citizens in a society to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
Be safe, call your grandparents, and take the virus seriously. We’ll see you on the other side, whenever or wherever that may be.
Oilers Lose 4-2 Against Winnipeg Amid Growing COVID-19 Fears (Copper and Blue)
GAME PREVIEW: Edmonton Oilers vs. Winnipeg Jets (Copper and Blue)
Hot Links: Wednesday, March 11 (Copper and Blue)
Strange Brew (Lowetide)
NHL Players Reflect On NBA Shutdown As Waiting Game With Season Starts (Sportsnet)
Strange Night In Edmonton As Oilers React To NBA Shutdown, Wonder If They’re Next (Sun)
Kyle Connor Scores Twice, Jets Beat Oilers To Move Into Wild-Card Spot (Sportsnet)
Will Oilers And Jets Be Last NHL Game For Awhile? (Sun)
‘It Hits You So Hard’: Health Crisis Puts Vital Oilers-Jets Game In Perspective (Athletic)
Mikko Koskinen vs. Mike Smith: Who starts Game 1 for the Oilers? (Athletic)